Double transfer line for metal sheet pieces production
raw materials saving is added to usual main requirements of white goods industry supplier market: great production flexibility and high production rate. By the way accuracy and repeatability are taken for granted, in metal sheet pieces manufacturing.
the idea is producing 2 items with mirror design starting from a single metal sheet coil: no waste material means costs saving. A standard shearing machine is fed by an accurate Cartesian robot: a single cut produces the mirror parts from a single piece of metal tape. The one part is normally worked along a transfer line, while the other is collected by a special conveyor belt and dragged to a centering unit: hereafter it can be worked as a normal piece along a second transfer line. The following manufacturing steps are as usual performed by operating units (designed for cutting, punching and bending operations) served by 4 stand-alone Cartesian robots. Each operating unit, of both transfer lines, is assembled on linear motion guides and moved by servomotors: this feature let the plant change its configuration and automatically adapt to the Operator’s settings. With this machine design, the Operator is requested just to input the piece drawing dimensions and each operating unit moves to its proper working position: few seconds and the production can be started. The software let working units settings be changed on-line (while the machine is running) to adjust the final dimensions of out-coming parts. Only tool changing and code selection from the keyboard are required to start the production of a new article.
New strong points are added to usual ones:
– no waste material: all the metal tape is used;
– same output for both pieces: the same amount of right and left pieces is shipped to the assembly department;
… and of course:
– high precision: ±0,05mm;
– high flexibility: length from 400 mm to 1200 mm and selectable working position for operating units;
– high productivity: 700 pieces/hour;
– low manpower required: just loading and unloading operations.
this kind of transfer lines reaches unmatched productivity, efficiency and quality levels, helping management in reduction of manpower costs and achievement of higher and higher product requirements. Profiling, sharing, punching and bending are all automated manufactures and fast Cartesian units, capable of rotating pieces for the working machines, handle products from a working station to the next. Having two production lines working side by side is the peculiarity of the plant: on the strength of this layout, metal scraps produced by the shearer in the first line can be collected and then worked by the second line to produce a mirror piece. This strong point let Production count on the same pieces amount of both sides for the following assembly operation: no more stops will occur in consequence of different quantity of the 2 parts. High speed transfer (10m/s @ 3g) and extreme working accuracy (±0,05mm) are mixed with the simple management of all functional parameters: without stopping the production, the operator can modify machines positions and grippers tilt angle in order to adjust the working cycle to actual material characteristics (real thickness, oil presence, annealing status, and so on). Training of new codes requires just technical dimensions to be declared by the operator: machines positions and robot paths will be automatically generated.